Doctor with Asperger's Disorder cannot maintain ADA claim against residency program
Martin Jakubowski sued the Christ Hospital in Ohio claiming that it failed to accommodate his disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Jakubowski was diagnosed with a form of Asperger's Disorder which clearly impacted his progress in the Christ Hospital's Family Practice residency program. His suit was based on the hospital's failure to make reasonable accommodations for his disability.The Sixth Circuit majority ruled that his proposed accommodation, offered three weeks after his diagnosis with Asperger's, was inadequate, thereby relieving the Hospital of making any accommodation. The Concurring Justice noted that a disabled person seeking accommodation under the ADA should not be required to propose a "trial ready" proposal prior to termination. Rather, the law merely requires the disabled person to inform his employer of the disability and to propose "an accommodation." The concurring judge, Circuit Judge Cole, would note that the employee may not immediately know what accommodations are available and reasonable, and thus the employee's right to relief should not be judged solely by the "scope of the accommodation requested" prior to discharge.